Fallen tree in Pelham Gardens a nuisance for neighbors

Residents near Mace and Wilson avenues told News 12 that the fallen tree is a safety hazard.

News 12 Staff

Oct 1, 2023, 5:54 PM

Updated 258 days ago

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A fallen tree in a neighborhood in Pelham Gardens in the Bronx is causing damage to a home – as well as the neighborhood.
Residents near Mace and Wilson avenues told News 12 that the tree, which is on the sidewalk, is a safety hazard. They say that the roots have been growing on the sidewalk for years and made it impossible to walk on.
Two weeks ago, part of the tree broke and fell onto the front porch of the home of Byron and Djuka Sinanovic. The residents, who are in their 70s, were not hurt. Djuka, however, said the tree almost hit her when it fell as she had just stepped outside her home to enjoy her morning cup of coffee.
"The branch fell – boom – on the floor. I screamed. I screamed like crazy," Djuka recalled. Now she says she lives in fear.
"I'm scared to sit in front of my house because I don't want to give trouble to my kids. If the tree falls on me, I'm dead," Djuka said.
A remaining part of the tree hovers over their house and appears to be damaging power lines.
A neighbor called 911 and the fire department was dispatched. FDNY officials cut up the tree but left the wood on the property.
Neighbor Leslie Santana told News 12 she contacted 311 and the district's council member several times but they were no help.
"I got general information back and general responses. 'We'll have someone look into it. We'll see what we can do,'" Santana said. "We just want to help the neighbors, we want to help the tree, we want to get their property fixed so that it's safe for everyone."
Byron and Djuka were also told that the Parks Department had 90 days to assess the tree. However, they were told that nothing can be done due to the power lines.
News 12 reached out to the Parks Department, who said in an email, “Following a report to 311 on September 15, the tree at this location was inspected on September 16. We noted a small downed limb with the tree in otherwise good condition.”
However, they gave no further information on the next steps. Byron and Djuka are calling on the city for help.
"It's not fair,” said Djuka. “For what did – I work all my life just for this house to have somewhere to sit and to have my kids somewhere. And for the city to come and just say no, we cannot do that. We cannot do anything with the tree."
News 12 also reached out Con Edison, who said that they will work with the residents to resolve the issue.


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